Southern Plate’s Practical Gift Guide 2023

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Classic Stanley Thermos

I dearly love my old fashioned Stanley thermos. I’ve used one for years and the quality just can’t be beat. The only thing better is being able to sit at an outdoor event and sip hot coffee in the cool weather. These are ideal for any coffee lover in your life who works way from home, has kids who play winter sports, or just loves to get outdoors – with caffeine. Less than $20. Click here for more information.enamel-dutch-oven-with-bow

Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

My enamel coated cast iron dutch oven is the most used cooking pot in my house. The main reason I love it so much is that it retains heat, so I can cook supper early, put the lid on, and it will stay warm for hours. These things are made to last a lifetime and this particular model has an oven safe knob so you can start your dish on the stovetop and finish it in the oven. Little over $50 but watch for sales! Click here for more information.


Electric Kettle

This electric kettle has been my MOST USED DAILY kitchen appliance for the past few years. It heats water so rapidly that whenever I need to cook with boiling water, I get it boiling in the kettle first and then pour it into my pot to reduce cooking time. I also use it to heat my thermal coffee karafe before I make my coffee and the kids love it when they want to make hot chocolate or ramen. Click here to see how we make our own homemade hot chocolate mix. This kettle is cordless, you just set it on the base to heat up, but the bottom of the kettle itself remains cool to the touch so you can lift it right off once boiling and set it down on the table. Just under $30. Click here for more information.


Cast Iron Pie Plate

The older I get, the more I appreciate my cast iron. these pieces stand the test of time and nothing cooks quite like it. At the top of my own wish list this year is this cast iron pie plate. It’s rare to find one of these but you can order this one on Amazon for just under $20. Click here for more information.


Retro Christmas Tablecloth

I love vintage. In these quarrelsome times my heart just attaches to most anything that brings a smile to my face and a warm nostalgia to my heart. This beautiful retro Christmas tablecloth takes me back to childhood Christmases at my Grandmother’s house. $35 Click here for more information.


Heritage Aprons

I was never an apron person until I discovered these wonderful handmade aprons by a sweet lady named Grace. She uses a vintage pattern to sew these in the style so many of our grandmother’s wore. I’m a daily apron wearer now because they are so handy, comfortable, protect my clothes, and the pockets are wonderful! I love that there is no tie pulling down on my neck. Grace has a wonderful selection of aprons in an assortment of fabrics in her Etsy shop. Featured is the pattern called “Christy’s Cherries”. For reference: I wear a size large, my mother wears a regular, and Katy wears a small. Get your orders in quickly to have them by Christmas. Price varies. Click here for more information. *Use code HAPPYHOLIDAYS For $5 off.


Wall Tree

I am always looking for more places to decorate for Christmas! This year I ordered this wonderful tree to hang on the wall in my kitchen since I just don’t have the floor or counter space for a tree anywhere else. A single nail was all that was needed and it comes pre-lit so I just hung it near an outlet. This is less than $15 and a great way to have a tree if space is an issue. Click here for more information.


Handheld Spotlight

This light made last year’s Gift Guide as well because I love it so much that I buy one for just about everyone eventually. It’s a great spotlight that allows me to see in all corners of my yard after dark just by shining it out the window. I bought one for my neighbors for that very reason as well as my in laws and parents. For less than $20 this just gives me peace of mind. It helps that if I hear something go bump in the night I don’t have to step outside to see what it is. Hint: I attached mine to a lanyard and have it hanging on a nail right by my door so I don’t have to go hunt for it should the need arise. Click here for more information.


Swiss Army Knife

Everyone needs a Swiss Army Knife. I generally have two with me: One in my purse and one in my pocket. Once you get used to having one on you, you can’t hardly go without it! This is a great simple model that includes all of the most used items. You won’t believe how handy it is having a pair of scissors on you at all times! Great gifts for teens (with a little bit of sense), men, women, parents, etc. Around $20. Click here for more information.


Southern Plate Cookbooks

Hey, I have to put my own books on here, right? I’ve written three books so far and each of them contains a large collection of recipes and my heart. Prices vary from $12-$20.

  • Southern Plate (hardback, the most expensive)
  • Come Home To Supper (get it before this edition is sold out! The next edition will be black and white inside instead of color – eek, horror!)
  • Sweetness (Just debuted this month and is already a #1 best seller)


Limited Edition Sweetness Remains Bronze Bracelet

This is an exclusive full bronze bracelet that I had commissioned to coincide with the release of my book, Sweetness. The sentiment comes from the dedication of my book and is meant to be worn in honor of a loved one who has passed on. Click here for more information or to order online. $28, proceeds benefit F&C ministry. Click here for more information. 



Tiny BlueTooth Speaker – This speaker fits in the palm of your hand and connects wirelessly to your phone to take the place of it’s speaker and deliver rich sound big enough to fill a room. I use one of these when I’m listening to the radio while doing dishes and just love it. My son and husband have both asked for one and I plan on buying one for each of my nephews as well. Less than $20 Click here for more information.


Battery Operated Flour Sifter – if you know someone who makes a LOT of rolls and yeast breads, this sifter can be a lifesaver on their hands. My mother absolutely insisted that I include this. Around $13.  Click here for more information.


Anker Portable Charger – I keep one of these in my purse for those times when I am away from home but my phone battery is getting low. They are small enough that my son and husband toss one in their pockets on vacations. At around $12, anyone with a smart phone can benefit from these. Click here for more information.


2 pack LED Water Resistant Collapsible Camping Lantern – These are a steal at just $9.95 for a two pack and make great stocking stuffers for anyone in your family who likes to camp or is concerned with preparedness. I’ve already ordered six to give as gifts. Click here for more information.



Sometimes, we just have to splurge a bit on ourselves. The final items on my Gift Guide are practical splurges that I, myself, have bought for myself in Christmases past – but only on the years when I was *really* good!


Excalibur Dehydrator

This is the cadillac of dehydrators and it certainly performs like one. Foods dehydrate evenly and quickly, far more efficiently than other dehydrators. It holds a ton and has handy little settings for each type of food so you don’t have to look anything up to be ready to go. This particular model has a timer as well, which is another handy feature. I love my Excalibur and it has easily paid for itself in the food we have preserved when it would have otherwise have gone to waste. Click here for more information.


Instant Pot

Believe all the hype. These things are amazing. Pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, and more. I use my Instant Pot so often I never put it away as it takes the place of so many appliances!



Berkey Water Filtration System

There have been so many water scares over the past few years that I don’t take a chance in my house. I run all of our water through the Berkey. Any water we drink, cook with, make tea or coffee with, etc, comes from the Berkey rather than the tap. This is the workhorse of all water filterers and we love how smooth and crisp the water tastes after it has gone through a cycle in our Berkey. The last thing I do before bed every night is fill it up for fresh water whenever we need it the following day. There are all different sizes but we have the Crown which holds 6 gallons of water at a time. Click here for more information.

This post contains affiliate links. In purchasing through my links you won’t pay any more but I will receive a small commission and that helps support Southern Plate. I am only sharing items I already have or plan on purchasing before Christmas and that I truly love.


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  1. I’ve got all three of your books (my favorite recipe is the one at the front of your first: Banana Pudding!!! Got the dehydrator as well – time I made some jerky for winter… and just took possession of the 6-quart Instant Pot. Looking forward to learn all the neat things you’ve been doing with yours.
    Here’s a Q for you: You tried the Air Fryers yet? I love mine, and doing a turkey breast for Thanksgiving. Blue Jean Chef’s recipe looks very good, and everything I’ve done in mine have turned out great! …and easy clean-up.

    Love ya! Blessing to you and all your fans, family, and friends as well.

    1. I have seen those but haven’t tried one, mainly because I just don’t fry a lot or have a lot of extra counter space. I’ve worked with the Blue Jean Chef before and she is a very sweet lady though. 🙂 You’ve got me curious so I’ll look into it!

      1. I have a aur frier abd remember it is not like frying as it uses no oil or very little. You can spritz things with oil if you like.

  2. I just purchased the cherries half apron from Etsy, what a great site. Thank you for introducing me to it. Great gift ideas on your list.

  3. I love this post! So many fun and great ideas. I love vintage, too, and that tablecloth is fabulous. Brings back memories! Speaking of vintage, I love my new Sweetness cookbook. I have all three and enjoy each one, but this last one is very sweet!!!

  4. I guess this is sort of silly but I didn’t know what the asterisk by the icing entry meant. I am also always thinking of variations as this seems like a good base for chopped nuts, candied fruits, or toffee bits. What do you think?

    1. Oh I meant to say you can use Duncan Hines or Betty Crocker or even Aldi’S brand. I’ve used them all. This takes variations really well. I’ve already photographed five to bring you in the next few weeks 🙂

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